INFORMATION FOR PATIENTS REGARDING THE CORONAVIRUS INFECTION
If you have either a fever or a new onset persistent cough then please check 111.nhs.uk online or call NHS 111 for further advice. Both our surgeries at Totton Health Centre and Forest Gate are open, however the doors are locked. This is to protect both patients and staff. If, after speaking to us on the phone you are asked to attend for an appointment, please ring the door bell when you arrive. Also, please take careful note of the site you have been asked to attend.
Unfortunately, we are not able to give specific advice as to whether individuals should attend their workplace. Please follow published Government guidance at the www.gov.uk website; following the coronavirus banner at the top of the page and then discuss arrangements directly with your employer.
Important changes to appointment system
You may have noticed that it is becoming more difficult to make an appointment.
This is a national problem and one we are feeling acutely in Totton as we have been unable to replace medical staff who have retired along with unexpected long term sickness which has been difficult to cover.
This is not a result of the merger, indeed one of the advantages of merger has been patients can now be seen on both sites - Totton Health Centre and Forest Gate Surgery.
Over the last year we have successfully recruited 2 highly qualified doctors as GP Partners and we are continuing to advertise for more GPs. We are still short, and the national shortage of doctors is not going to be resolved in the short to medium term. This means we have not been able to fully replace the doctor time lost and are consequently significantly short of appointments. There are also national shortages of practice nursing staff.
We are determined to continue to offer our patients the level of service they are used to and have chosen to embrace new ways of working to achieve this. We are going to employ a variety of professionals, including Advanced Nurse Practitioners, Paramedics and Pharmacists, and offer a variety of consultations (telephone, online and face to face) to ensure patients continue to have access to timely and appropriate primary health care.
This is of course a departure from the traditional model of General Practice but we believe that through being innovative and dynamic we can protect and preserve both our surgeries and the care of our patients.
These changes started to come into effect on Monday October 16th and mean that most people needing routine appointments will be seen at our Forest Gate Surgery building and most people needing urgent appointments will be seen at our Totton Health Centre building.
We ask for your support with these changes, please pop into the surgery to collect an information leaflet if you would like to learn more.
"Farewell" To Dr. Nicolas Arney
After many years working as a partner at Forest Gate Surgery, Dr. Nicolas Arney has decided to retire as a partner with New Horizons Medical Partnership.
Nick will retire mid-February.
Dr. Arney's patients will be allocated to other doctors within the partnership. Patients will receive notification of their new "usual" GP in the near future.
However, please remember patients can request to see any doctor.
Many of Dr. Arney's patients have expressed a wish to put their appreciation for the service and care he has given them over the years into words.
To this end, a message book will be available at Forest Gate Surgery for you to write your messages in from Monday 27th January.
If you would like to write a message in the book, please see one of the reception team after this date.